A company which runs gin festivals across the UK has gone into administration, leaving 20,000 advance ticketholders out of pocket.
Gin Festival Limited, based in Keighley, West Yorkshire, was placed in administration on Thursday.
As a result, 20 planned festivals have been cancelled and 27 members of staff will be made redundant.
The firm’s directors said it was an “extremely difficult time” for all involved.
Cancelled events include Gin Festival Norwich, which was due to take place at the weekend and was a near sell-out.
Ticketholders for events in Sandown, Worcester, Liverpool, Birmingham, Lincoln, Portsmouth, London, Wakefield, St Albans, Sheffield, Oxford, Edinburgh and Leicester, will also not be reimbursed.
‘Not handled well’
Donna Hills, who was due to attend the Norwich event, said she only found out on social media after seeing a post from a friend.
“It has not been handled well,” she said.
Susan Todd, from Great Yarmouth, said she too only found out after a friend posted on Facebook.
She said she was unable to get any answers from the firm.
Tickets for the Norwich event were advertised for sale at £14.
In a statement on social media, Gin Festival Limited – which traded as GinFestival.com – said it had “tried everything we could to rescue the business”.
“After five years of hard work and passion, this was not a decision we have taken lightly and personally this will mean we lose our home and everything we have worked hard to build,” it said.
Julian Pitts, of administrators Begbies Traynor, said: “Our aim was, of course, to find a purchaser for the business as a going concern in order to safeguard the jobs, but unfortunately, despite our efforts, this did not prove possible.”
“In this case approximately 20,000 tickets have also been sold for forthcoming events which will not be reimbursed as part of the administration process,” he added.
Anyone with advance tickets has been advised to contact their card provider.